1. Build a Network
How do HOAs get a vendor recommendation? Through their HOA management company, fellow resident, or close network.
As such, it’s a great idea to be affiliated with an HOA management company in your area. They can help you get several contracts in exchange for a volume discount.
Also, start being intentional at meeting new people, letting them know what you do, and building strong professional relationships.
Be a regular at your local businesses, such as coffee shops, restaurants, and mom-and-pop stores. Local businesses have a huge network of contacts, mostly customers. When somebody they know asks for contractor recommendations, you’ll be top of mind. This is one way to get referrals.
2. Keep a Good Reputation
When a potential client takes an interest in you, they will likely search about you.
Make sure to build an online presence and share your latest work. Ask past and present clients to leave an excellent review to help with business. If you have certain licenses, certifications, and awards, put them online.
Some HOAs and HOA management companies would go as far as contacting the Better Business Bureau and your state licensing bureau to check if your business is unscrupulous and has delivered bad work and blown budgets. They are also likely to check if you have insurance and workers’ compensation.
Another way to keep a good reputation is by pricing yourself right.
HOAs don’t just want cheap labor. They want quality work at a reasonable price. They are looking for good value for their money. Underbidding can mean you’re cutting corners somewhere, either in your work or in your materials.
3. Be Neat and Professional
No HOA or HOA management company would like to work with contractors in tank tops and a beat-up truck.
Just like in any business, first impressions are important. The appearance of your team, your truck, your tools, and your equipment is an indicator of the kind of work you deliver.
You may be a small company, but looking respectable and professional is very important in landing HOA contracts. This means having uniforms, clean lettered trucks, and decent equipment.
4. Target the Right HOAs
Don’t bite off way more than you can chew. If you’re a small company with only a couple of employees, don’t go after high-profile HOAs that need 10 workers there every day.
A better fit for small contractors are small condo communities. You’ll get a lot of experience from working for an HOA board and HOA management company at a small scale.
5. Be Persistent
Contact HOA management companies and introduce yourself. Ask if there is any HOA that might be interested in getting a proposal from your company. If they say no, ask when they believe a HOA will be accepting proposals again and get their email address.
Always call back and follow up. Your persistence will show that you are interested in working with them versus a competitor who just sits around, waiting to be called to submit a proposal.
Photos by Boris Debusscher and Tim Bermudez on Unsplash